Seeding Tips

Germinating in Containers

1. Sow seeds in a sterile, soil-less mix firmly pressed down in a labeled container.

2. Sprinkle seeds evenly across the level surface of the soil, very small seeds can be mixed with fine sand or sugar.

3. Generally seeds should be covered to a depth twice their diameter, very fine seeds should be sown on top of the soil and the container placed in a plastic bag or covered with plastic; try using Glad Press and Seal its great stuff.  Covering all the containers with clear plastic lids, or a thin cover of vermiculite to keep the humidity high around the seed can help with germination especially in Alberta’s dry climate.

4. Carefully water in your seeds. Use warm water in a spray bottle to saturate the surface soil and melt it around the seed insuring good seed soil contact without washing your carefully spread seed into one spot.

5. Make sure the growing medium doesn’t dry out, keep it moist but not wet use a spray bottle to sprits the soil if it looks like it is drying out.

6. Place containers in a warm sunny place.  Be sure to remove any plastic covers as soon as you see that germination has begun or the tender seedlings could damp off. Transplant after the first true leaves have opened.

 

Direct Seeding

1. Estimate 15 to 30 seeds per sq. ft. for prairie meadow plantings. In a bucket mix the seed 50/50 with potting soil or sand, something that will contrast with the soil at the planting site.

2. On your previously prepared site (see Site Preparation) hand broadcast the mix using around a cup for every 100 square feet.

3. Lightly rake the seeded area and then roll it or walk all over it, something to insure good seed to soil contact.  A firm seed bed that you can walk on without really leaving an impression will protect the seed from the birds, insects and the wind.

4. Use a sprinkler to water the area in well but not to the point of puddles and rivers.

5. Mulching the area lightly can help keep the humidity up around the seeds but to thick a layer of mulch will inhibit the germination process.